About New Orleans
New Orleans is the largest city in Louisiana and a major cultural center of the United States. It is renowned for its unique architecture, distinctive French-Creole culture, delectable cuisine, and lively nightlife. New Orleans was initially founded by French colonists in 1718 as La Nouvelle-Orléans or “The New City of Light” — it was thus named after Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, who served as regent of France at that time!
As the birthplace of jazz, New Orleans has long been a breeding ground for American music. The city is also home to vibrant art and literary scenes and many annual poetry events, such as the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival and the New Orleans Poetry Festival. These events attract poets worldwide to celebrate their craft in a city that celebrates creativity. New Orleans also contains various historical sites, such as Jackson Square and the French Quarter, with charming cobblestone streets and wrought iron balconies. Its folksy charm makes it an attractive destination for locals and tourists alike.
Poetry Options in New Orleans
New Orleans is known for its vibrant culture and colorful decor. From Mardi Gras parades to street performers, there are plenty of opportunities for incorporating unique decor into your poetry event. From masks to feathers to beads and streamers, you can create a festive atmosphere perfect for a poetry reading or spoken word event.
Fresh-cut flowers are an essential component of any special occasion in New Orleans. Whether arranged as an altarpiece or placed around the room as centerpieces, flowers bring life and color to a space. Whether you use roses, lilies, daisies, or something more exotic like jasmine, an abundance of blooms will add charm and fragrance to your gathering.
When planning a poetry event in New Orleans, you'll want to ensure you have comfy furniture for your guests. Consider adding couches, chaise lounges, and even beanbags if space allows. You may also want to consider featuring unique furniture from thrift stores or antique shops around the city — this would add a personal touch and create an interesting talking point at your event!
- Audio Equipment
Quality audio equipment is key to ensuring that your poetry event runs smoothly. Ensure you rent microphones and speakers so everyone can hear the readings clearly and without interruption. Also, consider setting up some background music — jazz is always popular in New Orleans!
Poetry Vendors in New Orleans
- FunkShui Balloon Collective
FunkShui Balloon Collective is a vendor that specializes in creating unique balloon creations for events. Their balloon designs are customized to meet the specific needs of each client. The balloons are constructed using heavy-duty professional materials emphasizing durability, ensuring they last as long as possible. Additionally, the company offers personalized name and logo balloons to cater to the most special requests.
- Flora Savage
Flora Savage is a florist recognized as an expert among other premier florists on BloomNation. She has a keen eye for the artistry of flowers and a strong passion for providing excellent customer service. With her extensive knowledge of the finest flower varieties, such as roses, lilies, and hydrangeas, Flora creates stunning floral arrangements that bring beauty and joy to every occasion. Her services include floral arrangements for weddings, proms, and funerals, and she works closely with her clients to ensure that every detail is taken care of for the perfect event.
- Art Bazaar and Home Decor
ArtBazaar is a family business that proudly brings its customers worldwide happy memories through its unique and vibrant products. Their decorative lamps are handcrafted with love in Turkey before being shipped to their traditional New Orleans retail shop. With a wide variety of Turkish lamps, ceramic plates, chessboards, vases, and jewelry bracelets made with precious crystal stones, ArtBazaar provides something special for every shopper. Their mission is to bring joy and beauty to people by offering exceptional handmade items.
Pros and Cons of Poetry Spaces in New Orleans
Organizing a poetry event in New Orleans can offer a range of advantages. However, there are also some potential challenges to consider. By weighing these pros and cons, organizers can make an informed decision about whether or not hosting a poetry event in New Orleans is the right choice for their goals and budget.
- Vibrant arts community: New Orleans has a thriving arts community, which makes it an ideal location to organize a poetry event. Many talented poets are in the area, and hosting a poetry event can attract a diverse and engaged audience.
- Cultural heritage: New Orleans has a rich cultural heritage reflected in its literature and poetry. The city has inspired many poets over the years, and organizing a poetry event can help celebrate this cultural legacy.
- Tourism: New Orleans is a popular tourist destination, meaning many visitors may be interested in attending a poetry event. This can increase the visibility of the event and attract a wider audience.
- Weather: New Orleans is prone to extreme weather conditions, such as hurricanes and heavy rainfall, which can disrupt travel plans and affect attendance at the event.
- Competition: New Orleans has many cultural events and activities throughout the year, which means stiff competition for attendance at poetry events.
- Funding: Organizing a poetry event can be costly, and securing funding can be challenging. This is especially true for smaller events, which may need help attracting sponsorship or grant funding in a competitive environment.
Tips on How to Organize Poetry Spaces in New Orleans
New Orleans is a vibrant city steeped in culture and art. Poetry spaces are an important part of the city’s identity and provide a platform for local poets to showcase their work and share their stories with the community. Whether you’re looking to start your own poetry space or want to make sure yours is running as smoothly as possible, here are some tips on how to organize poetry spaces in New Orleans:
- Connect with other existing poetry venues — Networking with other poetry venues will help you build relationships within the literary arts community and can serve as a great source of advice, resources, and even audience members. You may even be able to collaborate or partner with another organization to make your event more successful.
- Develop a clear mission statement — A mission statement will keep your organization focused, help you prioritize tasks, and attract potential volunteers or sponsors who share your goals. It should clearly outline what type of events and activities you plan on offering and how they align with your overall goals as an organization.
- Establish partnerships — Form strategic partnerships with local businesses, organizations, and institutions that can help support your work by providing anything from financial assistance to promotional materials or shared resources such as meeting spaces or technical equipment.
- Get involved in the community — Participate in local events and festivals related to literature, art, education, etc., allowing you to promote your space while engaging new potential audience members. And don’t forget about online outlets like social media! A strong web presence is essential for connecting with new people and building a following before an event occurs.
- Create diverse programming — Offer different kinds of programming that appeal to multiple audiences or interests; creative writing classes and workshops, open mic nights featuring both seasoned veterans of the stage as well as new voices looking for their first chance; spoken word performances; readings by local authors; themed nights focused on specific topics like Black history month or women's history month, etc.; opportunities for collaboration between writers/artists/performers; lectures by experts on various topics related to literature, etc.
- Find ways to be accessible — Make sure that all of your activities are open to everyone regardless of their background or experience level — this means finding ways to offer programs at no cost (or low cost) if possible, locating events in places that have good public transportation access; providing materials in multiple languages when applicable; accommodating physical disabilities, etc.
- Promote regularly — Don’t forget about promoting each event before it happens! Social media is one way, but there are plenty of others, like distributing posters around town (especially near universities), handing out flyers at local stores and cafes, reaching out directly via email listservs/newsletters, etc. The more eyes on each event, the better!
- Ensure safety – Always put safety first — make sure staff/volunteers know how best to handle any potentially dangerous situations that may arise during events (e.g., fights to break out). Have emergency contacts such as police officers on stand-by if necessary; offer appropriate training sessions for staff etc.
Famous Locations in New Orleans
- Audubon Park
Audubon Park, known otherwise as the Audubon Nature Institute, is a gorgeous place to take the family to New Orleans. It sets itself apart by offering a wide variety of attractions and activities, including a visit to some of the oldest oaks in town from previous plantation days. Besides that, visitors can explore animal habitats like the world-famous 400,000-gallon Gulf of Mexico-themed tank in the aquarium. There are also several attractions for animal lovers, such as the jaguar showcase, butterfly garden, and insectarium. Guests can also attend educational talks or screenings and sign up for experiences that involve getting close to wildlife. For children, various events are held within Audubon Park, making it a place of fun activities and great memories.
- Preservation Hall
Preservation Hall is an iconic institution in New Orleans revered for its traditional jazz music. The intimate building has limited seating options, all taken on arrival, and afterward, the only option is standing tickets. These tend to sell out most nights, making it wise to check their website two weeks before your visit to secure your spot. You can get same-day tickets, but chances of this happening are slim, so it's best to plan and keep expectations in check as some bands likely will be better than others.
- Mardi Gras World
Located in the port area of New Orleans, Mardi Gras World is a sight to behold. Unsurprisingly, it is one of the most enjoyable attractions in the city, treating visitors with a behind-the-scenes glimpse into America's biggest festival: Mardi Gras. Initially founded by Roy Kern in 1932 as a float manufacturing business, Kern Studios eventually opened its doors to Mardi Gras World in 1984. Over 100 artisans have worked tirelessly to create beautiful floats for this time-honored tradition. Approximately 75% of Mardi Gras' festive decorations are made here at Mardi Gras World, leaving visitors awed and amazed while touring the vibrant workspaces. Guided tours will provide an opportunity to learn about the unique traditions related to this event while observing these stunning floats run through their completion process — all within just one and a half hours!